I'm a n00b who needs some OS X help...

Discussion in 'macOS' started by dmf109, Feb 10, 2007.

  1. dmf109 macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2007
    So far everything with OS X is pretty intuitive. It's taken me a while to learn some of the shortcut keys. Anyway, I have noticed some things that I can not do (or just don't know how to do) that I am accustomed to doing with Windows. Here are a couple:
    one button to get to the desktop-minimizing all windows
    I like this feature with Windows so that I can get right to another application via it's icon on the desktop, vs going through finder, or minimizing all my open windows. Anyway to do it?

    I'm not quite grasping the 3 window control buttons at the top left of a window
    I'm used to having a button that closes the window, one that minimizes it to the tray, and the other that maximizes it to the limits of the screen. I see the red and yellow ones with OS X do as I would expect, but the green one confuses me; it doesn't really maximize the window as I'd expect, causing me to drag the corners out.

    having multiple windows of the same application open.
    I do this a lot at work, usually to make it easy to cut and paste, or to check one item against another. I'm using NeoOffice and would like to have 2 sheets open at once. Can't seem to make it happen.

    delete key
    I'm used to hitting the delete key and the text to the right on the cursor is deleted. With OS X the delete key is now what I have always used the BackSpace key for- to backspace. No biggy, really. But is there a way to delete as I'm used to?

    Other than those issues, I absolutely love my new MacBook. I still can't believe how everything just works, always. I'm so used to some peripheral or program just not working for some reason (like optical drives that disappear, or USB that stops seeing devices, etc...).

    Thanks in advance.
  2. CrzyCanuck72 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 10, 2003
    This is done through Exposé. Try pressing F11. You can change the keys, and assign hotcorners in System Preferences.

    as far as I know, the green buttom "maximizes" the screen to the most appropriate size for what you're viewing. There's no true maximize in OS X like in Windows, because in OS X you're always supposed to be be able to see what's behind a window. It makes doing things easier. Say you want to drag a file from 1 Finder window to another. If the Finder window were maximized like in Windows, you couldn't just drag it over, you'd have to navigate within that 1 window to the other location. But because you can see the other window in OS X, you can hover the file over the 2nd window, and it will become active, allowing you to easily move the file.

    I don't use NeoOffice, but I don't see why you wouldn't be able to do this...

    full-sized Apple keyboards have a traditional Delete key. MacBook keyboards don't, but you can download Double Command (Google it) to re-map the Enter key, which is hardly ever used, to do the Delete function
  3. nsbio macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    (i) Try F11 (or fn+F11). Also try Option+Apple+H to hide all applications except current.

    (ii) The red button closes the current window, not the current application for most applications; the yellow minimizes it. The green one is supposed to provide the "optimal view" of the content within the window, but in practice it is completely unpredictable and does you never know what: in Cupertino, they must have their weed days too...

    (iii) Multiple windows open - huh? Did you try simply opening another window?

    (iv) Fn+Delete is forward delete.

    Hope that helps and enjoy your 'book.
  4. biturbomunkie macrumors 6502a

    Jul 30, 2006
  5. Eric5h5 macrumors 68020

    Dec 9, 2004
    Use Exposé for that. You can set "show desktop" as either a key (default) or hot-corner of the screen. However, there's no need for using that for running apps by icons. Just put your frequently-used apps in the dock. There's no "minimize all windows" because there's no need for that either. I'd suggest becoming familiar with Exposé's functionality.

    As for the green button, it (attempts to) set the application window for a good size, not maximize. Personal preference is involved here, but again, I'd say there's no need for "maximize to full-screen" and I'd never use it even if that feature existed. You might have to do some "unlearning" to get the most out of OS X. ;) Again, Exposé is your friend. Once you get used to it, it will be hard to imagine life without it.

  6. dmf109 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2007
    Thanks everyone for the quick replies.

    Oh, and the open multiple windows of the same app- thanks! I never thought to check the Window bar. I'm used to selecting the application icon for another window. Niiiice.
  7. dmf109 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2007
  8. CrzyCanuck72 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 10, 2003
  9. lord patton macrumors 65816

    lord patton

    Jun 6, 2005
    You're in luck, because OS X handles these issues wonderfully, and you'll soon have them mastered.

    Follow the others' advice and get used to Expose, either via the function keys, hot corners or both. Via expose you can instantly look at 1) your desktop 2) all open windows or 3) all open windows within a particular application.

    Expose is neat, but I think there is a better way. And that is with command-Tab, command-` (note that is not an apostrophe, it is a "backwards apostrophe" that shares a key with the tilde (~) on the upper left hand corner of the keyboard) and hiding applications (command-h) commands.

    It works like this: hold down the apple/command key and press TAB once (keep holding the apple key). You will see icons for all your applications that have non-minimized windows floating large and beautiful in the center of the screen. Each time you hit the TAB button you will see a different icon highlighted. When you release the Apple key, you will go to the application that was last highlighted. This is a beautiful way to switch from one application to another. Faster than expose, IMHO.

    (An additional tip—WHILE LOOKING AT the list of icons that Apple-tab displays, TAB moves you to the right, and shift-TAB moves you to the left. The "backwards apostrophe" will also move you to the left, which is more convenient than hitting the shift key, as the "backward apostrophe" key is right next to the tab key)

    command-` is also a godsend. It will cycle you through all open windows of a particular application. So if you have 4 browser windows open, or three Word documents, or whatever, this shortcut will cycle you through these open windows.

    Thirdly, hiding application keeps things very neat and tidy. Hit command-h and your currently active application will disappear. To get it back, just command-TAB to the application and it pops right back up. This is an advantage over minimizing windows to the dock—minimized windows don't open when you command-TAB to the application.

    OS X rules.
  10. dmf109 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2007
  11. smueboy macrumors 6502a


    Oct 30, 2006
    Set Expose prefs in system prefs>Dashboard&Expose
  12. lord patton macrumors 65816

    lord patton

    Jun 6, 2005

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